Tom Ford to Head CFDA as New Chairman

The American designer will officially take the reins Jan. 1, 2020.

Tom Ford

Image via Getty/Jamie McCarthy/WireImage

Tom Ford

Tom Ford has been named the chairman of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.

The association announced the appointment Tuesday, following a board meeting in which Ford was elected to become the CFDA's next chairman. The American-born designer will officially take on the role Jan. 1, 2020, succeeding womenswear designer Diane von Furstenberg, who has led the CFDA over the last 13 years.

"I have had the privilege of being a member of the American fashion community for many years and have experienced what the CFDA does for its members and the industry as a whole," Ford said in a statement. "Having lived and worked in each of the global fashion capitals of the world, I look forward to working with the Board of Directors to further the voice of American fashion and its designers."

Ford will become the 11th person to head the CFDA, following industry heavy-hitters such as Oscar de la Renta, Perry Ellis, Herbert Kasper, Bill Blass, and Carolyne Roehm. 

The 57-year-old joined the CFDA in 2000, and has served as the creative director for Yves Saint Laurent, Gucci, and his eponymous luxury label. He has also ventured into the movie industry, having directed, produced, and written Academy Award-nominated films. Ford's high-profile status will likely draw more attention to CFDA, its various programs, and overall mission to propel the American fashion industry.

According to WWD, one of Ford's biggest tasks will likely be to revamp New York Fashion Week, which is rumored to relocate to The Shed at Hudson Yards this fall.

"I am so excited that Tom Ford has agreed to come and lead the CFDA," von Furstenberg said. "American fashion could not wish for a better visionary to further grow its impact in the global landscape. Tom is a role model for all of us, and we are very lucky to have him as the next Chairman of the CFDA."

The CFDA was founded in 1962 with the intention of nuturing and supporting American designers who work in womenswear, menswear, accessories, and jewelry. Some of the most notable CFDA programs and events are the NFYW, the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, Elaine Gold Launch Pad, and the CFDA Awards.

In other Ford-related news, the designer is speaking out against a now-viral tweet that was falsley attributed to him. There is a post circulating on social media in which Ford appears to disparage first lady Melania Trump. "I have no interest in dressing a glorified escort who steals speeches and has bad taste in men," the message in question read.

A spokesperson for Ford insists the tweet was fake.

"This is an absolutely fabricated and completely fake quote attributed to Mr. Ford that has somehow gone viral," the spokesperson told Vox. "Mr. Ford did not make this statement; it is completely false."

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